Want to know about another way immigrants to the United States are defrauded by people who are hired to help them?
By falling for exaggerated promises that guarantee more than can be delivered.
Here’s what happens.
You hire an immigration lawyer who assures you, “There’s no way we can lose.”
Or you hire an immigration consultant who promises she can get you a green card with no problems.
Your dreams of winning permanent resident status, being able to live freely in the United States, with no fear of family separation, is dangled in front of you as a promise with no risk.
Sounds good, doesn’t it?
The truth is quite different.
Nobody can ever guarantee you a victorious outcome.
Even the best, most ethical immigration lawyers do not win every single case. Many factors, beyond the lawyer’s control, will affect the end result.
When hiring an immigration attorney or consultant, ask what he or she will promise.
For example, I tell my clients, “I promise I will be a strong advocate for you. I will do everything within the law to help you and your family. I am not afraid to stand up to any immigration officer or judge to make sure your case gets fully and fairly reviewed. But even with our best efforts, we may not win.”
Good cases can be lost for many reasons.
The laws can change overnight. A new ruling in a distant court can change the way the law will be analyzed in your case.
And even if nothing changes, your immigration judge can interpret the facts of your case in many different ways.
Let me repeat. Nobody can ever guarantee you a victorious outcome.
There is no such thing as an iron-clad 100% guarantee.
Last October three women came to my Riverside immigration law office as a last ditch effort to help their sister.
Their sister was in the hospital, where she was nearing death. She wanted to execute a new will but not without her husband being present.
She also needed to make some crucial medical decisions. Again, she refused to do so without her husband. And the medical power of attorney designated her husband.
Her husband was stuck in his home country. He had been burned twice by immigration experts. The first time the con man was a consultant, the second time a lawyer.
He had been in his home country over two years. Meanwhile his wife’s medical condition gradually worsened.
Like so many unsuspecting immigrants, he was sent to his home country by a consultant who promised there would be no problems at his consular green card interview. He was not allowed to come back to the U.S. When his wife went to find the consultant, she learned his office had been shut down.
Realizing their brother-in-law might never see his wife again, his wife’s sisters hired an attorney to help him.
The lawyer told them to file for a special I-601 family unity waiver at the consular interview to return and charged a hefty fee. He assured the sisters that winning was a certainty.
They waited . . . and waited . . . and waited.
Until they were informed the request was denied.
The bottom line is this. When someone lies to you about your outcome, she’ll probably lie about many other things, too.
Immigration experts, consultants and attorneys alike, are not in a position to guarantee a specific result.
When you meet an immigration advisor who makes definitive promises, you’re probably meeting with a person who doesn’t care if you take actions that could destroy your case permanently.
On the other hand, when you choose to hire someone who discusses all your options honestly, you increase your chances for immigration success.
Avoiding Immigration Fraud, Part 2, covering the Lure Of False Promises Ploy, is the second part of a five-part series on the most common immigration and green card scams perpetuated on unsuspecting mixed-status immigrant families. To read the full series, click here: If You’re Looking For Immigration Help: Beware Immigration Fraud.